There is a gap in the system for homeless persons who are too sick to be on the streets, but aren't critically ill enough to warrant inpatient hospitalization. "Medical respite care is acute and post-acute care for persons experiencing homelessness who are to ill or frail to recover from a physical illness or injury on the streets but are not ill enough to be in a hospital. Unlike "respite" for caregivers, "medical respite" is a short term residential care that allows individuals experiencing homelessness the opportunity to rest in a safe environment while accessing medical care and other supportive services." (National Healthcare for the Homeless Council)
According to Florida State Statutes, hospitals are not permitted to discharge patients to 'homeless'. We believe that our area hospitals are doing their best to adhere to this law, but the challenge remains clear. To date, we have coordinated with hospitals and other agencies to provide clients hotel rooms for needed recovery time. This is a better alternative to sleeping outdoors, but not a practical long term solution - financially or logistically.
On The Spot aid, Inc, is ready to expand services to provide the kind of respite care needed to bridge the existing gap. With your partnership, we will invest in the Recuperative Care Fund campaign, with the realistic expectation to begin serving clients in the Summer of 2022.
We are moving towards the goal of a permanent Recuperative Care Center that will provide safe, sheltered bed rest and quality nutrition, to prevent disease progression that would result in extensive and costly hospitalization.